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_Clare_
BRONZE Member since Oct 2002

_Clare_

Still wiggling
Location: Belfast

Total posts: 5967
Posted:Hmmmmm...



Well, it seems Tony Blair has finally realised that he cannot be a popular PM, and with only months left has decided to throw his weight around in a rather unpleasant way.



In a 'you are either with me or against me'-type speech, he has demanded backbench rebel MPs support his bill to allow 'terror' suspects to be held for 90 days.



I think this is ridiculous. That's three months without charge!!!



Tony Blair's breach of civil rights



Now, we all criticise the American government for increasingly turning the country into a police state, but it seems that the British nanny state (a softer term, but just as menacing) is well on it's way.



Incidentally, I do still support random bag searches wink but, imprisonment without trial is a shocking breach of liberties in a system that is already vague.



For example, what defines 'terrorism' in the eyes of the law? Will that definition change in the next few months and years (almost certainly, yes). Where is this spectre of terror that we keep hearing about (with occasional news stories of how the police 'probably stopped a number of attacks this month')?!



If these measures weren't necessary during 30 years of IRA threat to England, why are they necessary now?



I was expecting a bigger article on Indymedia about this... but maybe it's still to come, or I missed it:

Indymedia



What do you think? Can three months detention be acceptable? And why is it that anyone who voices opposition to anti-terrorism laws is automatically branded a traitor?





Clare x


Getting to the other side smile

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Sethis
BRONZE Member since May 2005

Sethis

Pooh-Bah
Location: York University

Total posts: 1762
Posted:I voice opposition, but quietly in the corner and not on the internet or in e-mails wink

It's idiocy of the highest order. Either you have evidence or you don't. What's so special about Terrorism, in terms of crime? Why not lock up suspected murderers for months? Or suspected child abusers?

We already have systems in place for highly dangerous people. Tags and/or surveillance and curfews are used for suspects whom cannot be charged yet.

And (I'm looking at the article right now) that the definition of "Suspected Terrorist" can be "Someone who has the address of a decorated soldier in his house" is completely insane.

In an article in the Sunday Times a few months back (before the July Bombings), police raided the flat of a Muslim who had the name and address of a soldier written down. This apparently comes under the heading of "Collecting information of use to a Terrorist group".

Damn. Does that mean I can't pick up a train timetable? *THAT* would be useful for a terrorist attack.

But... What I really want to know is... How did they get suspicious enough of him to raid his flat? He had no prior association with any suspected Terrorists that was mentioned in the paper. shrug


After much consideration, I find that the view is worth the asphyxiation.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I may disagree with what you have to say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.

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_Clare_
BRONZE Member since Oct 2002

_Clare_

Still wiggling
Location: Belfast

Total posts: 5967
Posted:The government have brought down this veil of secrecy surrounding everything relating to terrorism... what it is, if there is a threat, why there is a threat, how that threat will manifest itself...

And then expects to be able to pass sweeping and dangerous bills which impact on our civil liberties.

Worse still... is there anything that can be done to stop them? Email your local MP? Ask what way they plan to vote? Urge them against supporting this bill?

Will anyone do it? Or is the apathy of our nation allowing our government to get away with murder?


Getting to the other side smile

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Spanner
BRONZE Member since Feb 2003

Spanner

remembers when it was all fields round here
Location: in the works... somewhere...

Total posts: 2790
Posted:I'm sure that, this week, I read that Charles Clarke had stated that victims of terrorism should not recieve no more compensation than victims of any other crime. It's an intersting contrast when compared to the proposals to detain perpetrators of terrorism without trial longer than those of any other crime.

I wish I had the time to dig out the source and I hope you'll forgive me for leaving you with that point as I do think it's an important one. Could someone please find it and post the link?

After all, I have been very well behaved in Social Discussion recently... ubbangel biggrin


"I thought you are man, but
you are nice woman.

yay,

:R"

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_Clare_
BRONZE Member since Oct 2002

_Clare_

Still wiggling
Location: Belfast

Total posts: 5967
Posted:Charles Clarke statement rejecting extra cash for victims

Thanks for that Spanner hug


Getting to the other side smile

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Doc Lightning
GOLD Member since May 2001

Doc Lightning

HOP Mad Doctor
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA

Total posts: 13920
Posted:Written by: Firepoise

I think this is ridiculous. That's three months without charge!!!




That's all very progressive compared to here. Here, there is no such time limit. rolleyes


-Mike )'(
Certified Mad Doctor and HoP High Priest of Nutella

"A buckuht 'n a hooze!" -Valura

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newgabe
SILVER Member since Mar 2005

newgabe

what goes around comes around. unless you're into stalls.
Location: Bali

Total posts: 4030
Posted:We in Austrlia are in the same situation with vague and terrifying laws just being passed. I'm terrified. Of our goverment. That makes them terrorists. Detain them, deport them and let's return to some sanity. And, like others. I wonder if just saying this IN PUBLIC makes me guilty of sedition?

.....Can't juggle balls but I sure as hell can juggle details....

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Doc Lightning
GOLD Member since May 2001

Doc Lightning

HOP Mad Doctor
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA

Total posts: 13920
Posted:Gabe, the Australian government are not terrorists, nor is the US government. Let's PLEASE be careful about carelessly throwing that word around.

War criminals, maybe. But terrorists are *non-governmental* organizations who attack *civilian* targets.


-Mike )'(
Certified Mad Doctor and HoP High Priest of Nutella

"A buckuht 'n a hooze!" -Valura

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Nephtys


Nephtys

resident fridge magnet
Location: Utrecht, The Netherlands

Total posts: 835
Posted:There are many different definitions of terrorism, some of which do include the parameters Mike mentioned, but according to the US government terrorists do not have to be non-governmental, neither do the targets have to be civilian:

"Terrorism is defined by the U.S. Department of Defense as "the unlawful use of -- or threatened use of -- force or violence against individuals or property to coerce or intimidate governments or societies, often to achieve political, religious, or ideological objectives."" (http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/teach/alqaeda/glossary.html)

Though this doesn't make the Australian, UK or US govts terrorist becuase they're passing terrifying laws, if you deem the invasion of Iraq to be unlawful (the opinions are divided on this), these governments do fall under that definition of terrorism.

And Claire, i agree, it would be absolutely horrendous if this bill were passed frown But this has been done before, by the British government, against IRA members - worse, i don't think there was even a time limit on the length of time during which you could be interred. See here.

hug

Neph


everyone's unique except me

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Nephtys


Nephtys

resident fridge magnet
Location: Utrecht, The Netherlands

Total posts: 835
Posted:Oh, sorry for the doubnle post, but I just read the comments under 'in pictures'... the BBC could not find ONE person who fully rejected the proposed bill as a terrible breach of civil liberties!?!? I find that far more shocking than Blair's standpoint! (which at least was expected...)

everyone's unique except me

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newgabe
SILVER Member since Mar 2005

newgabe

what goes around comes around. unless you're into stalls.
Location: Bali

Total posts: 4030
Posted:Written by: Nephtys




"Terrorism is defined by the U.S. Department of Defense as "the unlawful use of -- or threatened use of -- force or violence against individuals or property to coerce or intimidate governments or societies, often to achieve political, religious, or ideological objectives."" (http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/teach/alqaeda/glossary.html)



Though this doesn't make the Australian, UK or US govts terrorist becuase they're passing terrifying laws, ....





passing the laws, maybe not the T word. But as soon as they act on them, yep, I believe it is an appropriate word to describe the way a government treats its people. It is entirely possible for an elected government to erode civil liberties, detain, intern, even torture and eliminate its own citizens to the extent that the rest of the people becomes too frightened to object. This can happen in a surprisingly short time, and not only in 'other' parts of the world. It happened in Europe within my parent's lifetime. Do we have such short memories?



* goes off to search out a wonderful quote by a Bishop (Niemuller?)*


.....Can't juggle balls but I sure as hell can juggle details....

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onewheeldave
GOLD Member since Aug 2002

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: sheffield

Total posts: 3252
Posted:I can't really think of anything insightful to say on this, other than that it's wrong.

I think it's fair to compare the government to terrorists when they pass laws that are basicially unjustified and will cause fear to the population.

Using the word 'terrorism' seems to be becoming a licence to pass legislation that, in any other circumstances, would be clearly seen as oppressive.

Personally, I've never felt particularly at risk from a terrorist attack, and consider the 'threat' to be hugely exaggerated; I acknowledge there is a threat- it's just that I feel more threatened at the thought of living in a state where, innocent as I may be, my door can be kicked in by armed government thugs, and dragged off to a lengthy period of internment where, if things continue in this vein, I can expect to be abused and possibly tortured.

And I'm white, so it's unlikely to happen- how would I be feeling if I wasn't white?

It's not long since a innocent man was shot in the head multiple times, in broad daylight, in London, by 'police'; initially on the grounds that he 'ran away'- later it was apparent that he was not even guilty of that.

It could literally have been anyone; admittedly, in that particular case, not if they were white: but, once we start getting some high-publicity attacks by white terrorists, that could quickly change.

I'm not one for dragging in comparisons to Nazi Germany as a knee-jerk response to things like this, however, one thing that is forcing itself into my mind with growing frequency these days, is this famous quote by Pastor Martin Niemller-

First they came for the Jews
and I did not speak out
because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for the Communists
and I did not speak out
because I was not a Communist.
Then they came for the trade unionists
and I did not speak out
because I was not a trade unionist.
Then they came for me
and there was no one left
to speak out for me.


"You can't outrun Death forever.
But you can make the Bastard work for it."

--MAJOR KORGO KORGAR,
"Last of The Lancers"
AFC 32


Educate your self in the Hazards of Fire Breathing STAY SAFE!

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NYC


NYC

NYC
Location: NYC, NY, USA

Total posts: 9232
Posted:People who change the definition of words to suit their own political beliefs are terrorists.

Well, shall we go?
Yes, let's go.
[They do not move.]

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Drudwyn


Drudwyn

Forget puppy power, Scrappy's just gay
Location: Southampton Uni

Total posts: 632
Posted:No, they're arseholes who have no respect for hard fought for civil liberties.

Written by:
"Terrorism is defined by the U.S. Department of Defense as "the unlawful use of -- or threatened use of -- force or violence against individuals or property to coerce or intimidate governments or societies, often to achieve political, religious, or ideological objectives."



When governments do it, they're going against what we fought so hard for in the 1939-1945 war. It's deeply saddening. I have emailed my MP in this matter, but if we live in a country where people feel that this 'threat' is worth throwing civil liberties away for, then what's the point?

I have never felt threatened by any Sikh, Muslim, black or Jewish man woman or child. White men are the only ones I've ever felt threatened by. I'm a 6' tall, white, middle class 20 year old man. Police men with guns and a shoot to kill policy, chavs with nothing better to do, drunk idiots outside of clubs, the government we voted in these, are the ones who threaten me. Who kills more each year, Muslim terrorists or white English men?

And yet we're told that these terrorists are such a threat that my civil liberties are being slowly, systematically and democratically wiped away. Where is the rebellion?


Spin, bounce, be one with the world, because it is yours to enjoy...

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UCOF
SILVER Member since Apr 2002

UCOF

Carpal \'Tunnel


Total posts: 15414
Posted:It has just been turned down in the house of commons...

MPs rejected the plans by 322 votes to 291 - a majority of 31.

Read all about it!


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_Clare_
BRONZE Member since Oct 2002

_Clare_

Still wiggling
Location: Belfast

Total posts: 5967
Posted:Lol, yeah, just heard about it!

Wow. That could almost be described as a victory for democracy (in the olde fashioned sense of the word smile )

smile

PS: Neph... yeah I know, internment was a huge issue in the North during the Troubles... it made the problem much, much worse - part of the reason I'm so opposed to it now.


Getting to the other side smile

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Sethis
BRONZE Member since May 2005

Sethis

Pooh-Bah
Location: York University

Total posts: 1762
Posted:Written by: Tony Blair

...it was better to have done the right thing and lose, than to do the wrong thing and win.




Oh the IRONY!!!!


After much consideration, I find that the view is worth the asphyxiation.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I may disagree with what you have to say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.

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Doc Lightning
GOLD Member since May 2001

Doc Lightning

HOP Mad Doctor
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA

Total posts: 13920
Posted:I got stopped on the subway for a random bag check. My response: "I'm sorry, officer. I believe that what you are doing is unconstitutional."

I walked out and proceded to the next station, 7 blocks down the street (about a 5 minute walk) and got on there.

Fat lot of good the random searches do.


-Mike )'(
Certified Mad Doctor and HoP High Priest of Nutella

"A buckuht 'n a hooze!" -Valura

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_Clare_
BRONZE Member since Oct 2002

_Clare_

Still wiggling
Location: Belfast

Total posts: 5967
Posted:Did you still get searched?

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_Clare_
BRONZE Member since Oct 2002

_Clare_

Still wiggling
Location: Belfast

Total posts: 5967
Posted:Poor Tony's crushing defeat smile

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Doc Lightning
GOLD Member since May 2001

Doc Lightning

HOP Mad Doctor
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA

Total posts: 13920
Posted:Written by: Firepoise

Did you still get searched?



Nope. Walked right on unimpeded by anything or anyone.

Now, s'pose there HAD been a bomb in my backpack?


-Mike )'(
Certified Mad Doctor and HoP High Priest of Nutella

"A buckuht 'n a hooze!" -Valura

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_Clare_
BRONZE Member since Oct 2002

_Clare_

Still wiggling
Location: Belfast

Total posts: 5967
Posted:Hmmm. That's not very effective at all frown

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coleman
SILVER Member since Aug 2002

coleman

big and good and broken
Location: lunn dunn, yoo kay

Total posts: 7330
Posted:Written by: doc
Now, s'pose there HAD been a bomb in my backpack?





well, that's very similar to what actually happened here on july 7th mike - one of the bombers couldn't get on a tube quickly enough so he ended up on a bus instead.



however, if he had been stopped for a search and he did what you did mike, i.e. he tried to refuse a search on the grounds of it being unconstitutional, the police would have laughed and told him that "we either do it here or we do it down the station." and he would have been caught.



your true story seems to show that the application of random searches, at least on the new york subway, are rendered utterly useless by a non-specific reference to the american constitution confused



if you are going to introduce stop and search laws, they should at the very least be applicable in the real world.



we in the u.k. live in one of the least libertarian democratic states in the world now so maybe i'm just more resigned to the state's apparent right to invade my privacy on a whim... umm shrug





cole. x


"i see you at 'dis cafe.
i come to 'dis cafe quite a lot myself.
they do porridge."
- tim westwood

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Glåss
PLATINUM Member since Nov 2001

Glåss

The Ministry of Manipulation
Location: Bristol

Total posts: 2523
Posted:I cheered in bed last night when I heard the news that Blair had lost

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NYC


NYC

NYC
Location: NYC, NY, USA

Total posts: 9232
Posted:(You might want to reexamine your love life wink )

Well, shall we go?
Yes, let's go.
[They do not move.]

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jeff(fake)


jeff(fake)

Scientist of Fortune
Location: Edinburgh

Total posts: 1189
Posted:Written by: Sethis

And (I'm looking at the article right now) that the definition of "Suspected Terrorist" can be "Someone who has the address of a decorated soldier in his house" is completely insane.



Wait a sec. Does that mean that technically I can be suspected of terrorism for having my granfathers address in my note pad? eek

Hope I'm misunderstanding it.


According to Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle of Quantum Dynamics, we may already be making love right now...

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Sethis
BRONZE Member since May 2005

Sethis

Pooh-Bah
Location: York University

Total posts: 1762
Posted:I think it might be permissable if your family is in the military...

What it means is if you're 1. A Muslim and... well... A Muslim, then you can be arrested for more or less anything at all.

Technically you could be arrested, but it's unlikely because he's a member of your family and you're white.

But it makes the point that some of these laws are really insane. Maybe this one should be in the "That's really a law" thread...


After much consideration, I find that the view is worth the asphyxiation.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I may disagree with what you have to say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.

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Stone
GOLD Member since Jun 2001

Stream Entrant
Location: Melbourne

Total posts: 2830
Posted:Yes, the new totalitarian legislation that many countries are in the process of introducing is more than a bit of a worry. Not only because of loss of liberty for everyone with Guantanamo Bay style incineration without trial, but also because of the racial tension that it stirs up.



There were dawn raids in Australia recently, after only minor changes to existing laws. No some of these people might be guilty, and there were some confrontations following arrests. However, the front page article in the Melbourne Herald Sun made me sick.



Titled We don't want to work with these thugs the story incites and supports racial hatred: SCORES of factory workers say they don't want to work alongside the thugs who bashed cameramen outside a court where nine men were facing terrorism charges. "We don't want them here," he said. "Not all Muslims are terrorists, we know that. But beating up television crews . . that's just un-Australian. {{thats new to me}} "This is the country I love . the company needs to take a stance to protect us." "Some of the guys wanted to bash them," he said. "They were going to wait for them to knock off and get them. They're edgy about working alongside these blokes."





yeah right





"We don't want them here" says it all.



mad2


If we as members of the human race practice meditation, we can transcend our fear, despair, and forgetfulness. Meditation is not an escape. It is the courage to look at reality with mindfulness and concentration. Thich Nhat Hanh

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_Clare_
BRONZE Member since Oct 2002

_Clare_

Still wiggling
Location: Belfast

Total posts: 5967
Posted:eek

Thats shocking Stone...

frown


Getting to the other side smile

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Doc Lightning
GOLD Member since May 2001

Doc Lightning

HOP Mad Doctor
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA

Total posts: 13920
Posted:Wait, factory workers are upset that other factory workers beat up a camerman?

I'm not sure what you're upset about. I'd be pretty damned upset if someone I worked with beat up anyone, regardless of race.


-Mike )'(
Certified Mad Doctor and HoP High Priest of Nutella

"A buckuht 'n a hooze!" -Valura

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